- The agreement will create the Opengela Fundazioa, which will begin its work in 2021 to promote comprenhensive urban regeneration in neighbourhoods in the Basque Country, through local offices that will advise neighbourhoods.
- The actions aims to reduce the social inequalities, facilitate the eccess to reforms for vulnerable groups, and promote CO2 neutral cities through energy efficiency actions.
The Minister of Territorial Planning, Housing and Trasnport of the Basque Government, Iñaki Arriola, and Antonio Calçada, Director General of the Fundación Repsol, signed a pre-agreement on Monday for the creation of the Opengela Fundazioa, the organisation through which they will jointly promote a comprehenseive plan for eco-sustainable renovations in the Basque Country.
The new Foundatión will maage the eco-sustainable rehabilitation projects throughout the autonomous community and progress is already being made in identifying the areas of action. These interventios are currently being carried out through the european Opengela Project, financed by the Horizon 2020 programme, in the pilot neighbourhoods of Txonta (Eibar) and Otxarkoaga (Bilbao) and its model is being replicated in Aramotz (Durando y Basaundi Bailara (Lasarte-Oria). In addition to these projects, the Basque Gobernment has promoted urban regeneration actions in the neighbourhoods of Cororación (Vitoria-Gasteiz) and Txomin Enea (Donostia).
With this new step towards the creation of Opengela Fundazioa, the Basque Government and Fundación Repsol are seeking to extend to the whole of the Basque Country. the evolution towards a news model of sustainable neighbourhood that is energetically sustainable, accesible and socially and urbanistically cohesive.
The actions will focus on energy efficiency, accesibility y structural safety, contributing to reduce emissions and improving people’s quality of life. The local offices, Opengelas, will facilitate the technical assistance to carry out these refurbishment and will also offer financing programmes to give Access to this type of intervention to people in situations of social vulnerability, long-term unemployment of energy poverty.
Opengela Fundazioa will be a private foundation and is expected to start its activity during the course of this year, after its registration inte Basque Country Foundations Registeer, an activity which will carry out in close contact with both the Basque Government and the Basque Town Councils.
Equality and innovation in rehabilitation and urban regeneration
The Minister of Territorial Planning, Housing and Trasnport pointed out tha “Basque Country has one of the oldest free housing stock in the whole or southerns Europe and we have the obligation to make the revolutions od the energy-sustainable rennovarons available to everyone, regardless of therir purchasing power”.
For his part, António Calçada, Director General of Fundación Repsol, stressed that this collaboration “promotes sustainable and includice energy transition, contributing to the objectives of reducing emissions and improving the quality of life of families, especially the most vulnerables. In addition, it has a great impact on economic recovery, supporting the development of the Basque Business fabric to carry out the refurbishments”.
The agreement, will also promote research, development and innovation in building retrofitting, urban regeneration and sustainable, inclusive, cohesive and resilient cities.